- - Monday, January 26, 2015

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

David Landreth may be one of the cool kids of music, but he’s no snob.

Mr. Landreth, his brother Joey Landreth, guitarist Ariel Posen and drummer Ryan Voth — together The Bros. Landreth — have been dubbed Americana in the U.S., alt-country in their native Canada and just plain fly everywhere. But that doesn’t mean they are above slipping plenty of commercially successful songs by Paul McCartney and other pop-rock gods into their sets.

“It’s important as musicians to go back and get your history,” Mr. Landreth said from his Canadian home before embarking on the band’s tour in support of its debut album, “Let It Lie,” released Tuesday. “It’s like any other vocation: You need to understand where the art came from so you can built upon it.”

Yes, we know we’re harping on this band of brothers — and we’ll give it a rest after this — but we don’t want you to miss out on musicians who capture the attention of critics at Billboard, CMT and beyond, thus proving they were no Americana Music Association flash in the pan. Consider this your last call to see a band on the path to hitting it big.

“That Americana showcase was an exciting moment for us,” said Mr. Landreth, reflecting on last year’s event that revved up buzz about the band. “We got to play and to hear [music by] all of our heroes.”

Now the group is riding high on reviews of its live show, full of original music but seasoned with covers by Mr. McCartney and other household names, and its album, which has won shoutouts from big-name critics including this from CMT: “‘I Am the Fool,’ a standout from their upcoming debut album ‘Let It Lie,’ is a snake-bitten electric blues full of dirty, swampy attitude.”

It’s rare for a fresh-out-of-the-box band to grab such kudos, but David and Joey were born into making that kind of music thanks to their musician father and music-loving mother, who took the children to all their father’s shows. In fact, their father, Wally Landreth, is still a big musical influence, making a vocal cameo on the song ‘Runaway Train,’ a fan favorite.

“That’s definitely the one we get the most raucous response to,” David Landreth said.

Joey and I do a dueling guitar thing at the end [where we trade off] improvising, playing off each other. It’s really understated and subtle, and sometimes it’s Armageddon. You just never know.”

As their music reaches more fans, some of the songs have deeper meanings for the bandmates.

“‘Greenhouse’ is on the record, which was a really, really heavy and difficult song for us to write. It wound up being about suicide,” said Mr. Landreth. “We finished that tune and it had a dark effect on Joey and me. It was a hard song to play, but now that we’ve taken the tune all across Canada and the States, it’s brought us to people who were impacted by suicide but came out the other side. So it’s become more transformative and hopeful.”

Music with such layered meaning has fueled the Bros. Landreth fan base.

“Fans say they find us through reading about us or somebody giving them our music,” he said. “And we like knowing, too, that a lot of people find us through old-fashioned word of mouth.”

So here is your printed word of mouth, and we’ll give you some music too. Don’t say we didn’t tell you.

IF YOU GO

WHAT: The Bros. Landreth

WHEN: Thursday, 8:30 p.m.

WHERE: Iota Cafe

2832 Wilson Blvd.

Arlington, VA

INFO: 703/522-2354

$10

IotaClubAndCafe.com


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